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Accredited IT Department award winners announced

From the National Computing Centre, Manchester UK.

19th October 2009

The National Computing Centre (NCC) has announced the first four organisations to be accredited to their new Standard for IT Departments. Representatives from Dickinson Dees, North Wales Police, Tameside Metropolitan Borough Council and Lancashire Constabulary received their certificates at the National Computing Centre's Annual Conference held last week in London.

The National Computing Centre's IT Department Accreditation (ITDA) scheme is designed to help IT departments demonstrate that they are fit for purpose through an independent and objective appraisal of the key business activities they undertake. The NCC IT Department Accreditation Standard takes a holistic approach and provides a single, complimentary accreditation that can be used to demonstrate that the best business practices are used across IT.

Steve Markwell, the National Computing Centre's CEO said, "IT departments are being challenged to do more with less, how do you find out if you are optimising your performance whilst still managing the risks? The NCC's IT Department Accreditation provides re-assurance from a trusted source that your IT Department is doing the right things well". 

The Scheme is designed for internal IT departments, or IT service companies that either specialise in service delivery, or buy-in services as clients for others. The application of the Standard is scalable and suits all sizes of IT function.

The ITDA was created in collaboration with NCC's membership community, and is based on an existing framework successfully developed by NCC for the Regional Development Agency, Advantage West Midlands. The Scheme also features a business improvement programme – all applicants receive a bespoke Action Plan which enables them to focus business their improvement activity.

Dickinson Dees, a national law firm based in Newcastle, is clear about the contribution that IT makes to its success and was the first organisation in the country to achieve the prestigious Accreditation.

Understanding performance issues and their implications, and being able to prioritise areas for improvement is vital to the successful delivery of a high quality service to clients as long standing NCC member, Simon Earnshaw, director of IT at Dickinson Dees, explains:

"The provision of efficient IT services is fundamental in our being able to provide clients with the best possible level of service and we focus our IT resources on process automation, continuous improvement and governance in order to do so."

Speaking of the NCC's IT Department Accreditation Scheme, Simon commented: "Rather than being just an accreditation process for a single service element, the ITDA came with a practical approach to continuous improvement across all elements of IT service delivery. The structure of this approach is ideal for us as it allows us to continually strive to improve customer experiences, both internal and external, whilst delivering upon our firm wide objectives as a business." 

Geoff Bradley Director of North Wales Police's iGroup, responsible for supporting 1600 police officers and 900 staff with a small in-house IT team said, "I'm delighted that we have received this accreditation, We aim to deliver a service that stands business scrutiny and this award confirms this unequivocally. Furthermore, this is recognition that the public sector can be at the forefront in making effective and efficient use of technology."

Tameside Metropolitan Borough Council is one of ten metropolitan boroughs that comprise Greater Manchester and serves approximately 215,000 citizens. Norman Crawford, Assistant Director of IT services said of the ITDA, "There is nothing like external endorsement to motivate the internal team, and the Action Plan delivered as part of the accreditation process gives everybody something positive to focus on and stimulates discussion on topics that are very important, but often get lost in day-to-day operations."

Stuart Fillingham heads up the 85 strong IT Department at Lancashire Constabulary. The Force who support 8,000 staff of which 4,500 are police or police community support officers, won the European Public sector Award for Innovation in 2008. The IT Department also provide services to other Forces. Stuart said, "Quality underpins the department's processes, especially as we provide products and services to external customers, we need to be seen as and be a quality and efficient provider to paying customers. NCC's ITDA gives us that badge of independent endorsement."

ITDA Badge

The organisations who become accredited are able to use the "National Computing Centre Accredited IT Department" marque to demonstrate that best practices are used across the department.

For more information about the Scheme, please see


Photos of the Accredited organisations receiving their awards are available.

Case studies of the Accredited organisations can be found here: First Successful IT Depts

About The National Computing Centre (NCC)

The National Computing Centre (NCC) helps IT decision makers deliver effective solutions to business problems by bringing together users, experts and vendors to share experiences and develop best practices. We are a non-profit distributing organisation.

Lancashire Constabulary

Dickinson Dees

Tameside MBC

North Wales Police

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